Skip Nav
Strength Training Workouts
25 of the Best 20-Minute Workout Videos — All in 1 Place!
Bodyweight Workouts
Do These 3 Things in Your Living Room to Lose Weight
Sip on This All-Natural and Not-so-Sugary Unicorn Frappuccino

Friends Can Raise Your Blood Pressure

We all look to our friends in time of stress, but a new study shows that some friends may to creating stress in our lives.

Research, recently performed by psychologists at Brigham Young University indicates that "ambivalent" friends affect our blood pressure. Ambivalent friends, which I sometime call mean friends, are those people we are involved with, who we care about, but who are unpredictable. When you seek their support you are not certain whether they will offer support or indifference, understanding or criticism.

The study illustrated that being in the presence of friends who are critical, unpredictable or unreliable tended to elevate study participants' heart rate and generally put them "on edge." When it came to sharing negative news with these "mean" friends, participants experienced a rise in blood pressure.

While the long term health impact of the emotional jolts to the cardiovascular system is unknown, researchers speculate that having many ambivalent friendships could take a physical toll. I certainly think it takes an psychological toll.

My non-ambivalent friend DearSugar wants you to know how you feel about toxic friendships.

Fit's tip: Know your friends and know who to go to when you need support. It is better for your heart as well as your mind.


Around The Web
Join The Conversation
Pink_Lipstick Pink_Lipstick 9 years
I totally agree. I recently distanced myself from two friends who made me feel stressed and down on myself everytime I was around them. I feel I'm much better off now.
Nessyliz Nessyliz 9 years
This is crazy, but my mom is my ambivalent friend! And that really sucks. Oh well, at least I have my sisters.
deanna deanna 9 years
I couldn't agree with this article more. It is spot on. Thanks for putting it up.
You Asked: My Parents Won't Let Me Go
Beet Juice Lowers Blood Pressure
Long Commutes Cause Obesity and High Blood Pressure
Handle This: Dating Someone 20 Years Older
Celebrate the New Year: Get Your Cholesterol and Blood Pressure Checked
A Do or a Don't: Confiding in Others About Body Insecurities
Hating Valentine's Day
Apple Has the Best Computer Tech Support
Relaxing Mother's Day Gifts
Sleep Tight: Your Health and Your Sleep
From Our Partners
Latest Fitness
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds